Things you need to know to make the right choice
Use our simple Q & A to help you find the right mesothelioma attorney for your case. Here are some key points to look for when choosing your mesothelioma attorney:
Will the law firm directly handle my case?
As you may have seen on TV, there are many law firms advertising for mesothelioma clients. However, most of these firms have no experience prosecuting mesothelioma cases and immediately refer all of their clients to other law firms. To get the best results in your lawsuit you should look for a law firm that actually prosecutes mesothelioma cases.
What if the law firm I like handles a lot of cases, but wants to refer or co-counsel with another firm on my case?
First, always remember — you are the client. You have the right to not consent to such a referral or co-counseling arrangement. However you should listen to the attorney’s reason for suggesting this. There is generally a good reason for the recommendation. Some law firms work exclusively with other law firms as co-counsel depending on the needs of the client’s case. This is completely different from the wholesale referral of case that many mesothelioma law firms without prosecution abilities do without thought to your family’s needs.
Be aware of these “marketing” law firms and be certain to ask any firm you speak with if that firm has actual case experience.
Is the law firm highly experienced in mesothelioma law?
When you file a mesothelioma lawsuit, you will be suing very large companies with virtually unlimited resources. Therefore you want to make sure your law firm has true litigation experience battling these asbestos companies. Mesothelioma law is a highly complex and specialized area of the law. The law firm you choose must be active in the litigation of mesothelioma cases.
Does the law firm have extensive trial experience?
It is important to know that the law firm you chose has a significant history of preparing and taking mesothelioma lawsuits to trial. It is just as important to know that they have been successful in obtaining both verdicts and settlements from the asbestos companies. Your mesothelioma law firm should have a long history of achieving successful results for their clients. When an asbestos company recognizes you are being represented by a law firm, such as Baron and Budd, with an established history of success, they are more likely to negotiate favorable settlements.
Does the law firm have a record of winning appeals?
Obtaining a big verdict sounds great, but that is just part of the legal process. Most verdicts are appealed by the asbestos companies. You want to make sure that your mesothelioma law firm has the resources and lawyers to handle the appellate process. Unlike many firms, Baron & Budd has the resources and appellate lawyers to handle your case when it reaches the appellate level.
Is there any scenario in which I will owe money?
There are some instances in which law firms will charge you for the expenses incurred while litigating your case if they are not successful in obtaining compensation for you. However, Baron & Budd is not one of those firms. It is important to read the contract you are asked to sign with any law firm.
Are the dollar amounts the law firm has on its website what was actually received by the client?
Some law firms post the gross amount of the recovery before legal fees and expenses have been extracted. This makes the compensation seem more successful than perhaps it actually was. At Baron and Budd, we feel it is important to show prospective clients the actual amounts our clients and their families received. When you are interviewing law firms be sure to ask for a list of the net amounts their clients received.
Were the cases discussed on the law firm’s website actually handled by the law firm?
Some law firms that market for cases and simply refer them to other firms for litigation may boast about a successful verdict or settlement like it was their own. So be sure to ask any firm you interview about the cases they are showing as their successes. At Baron & Budd, we only list those cases on our website that we actively litigated.
What percentage of the law firm’s cases are prepared for litigation?
If the percentage of cases a law firm prepares for litigation is low, it might be a red flag that the firm is not as aggressive or experienced as other firms in mesothelioma litigation. The facts of each case dictate the course the case will take. Some cases are litigated and others are handled by making submissions to the many Asbestos Bankruptcy Trusts for compensation. Many cases include both litigation and submission to bankruptcy trusts.
What is the law firm’s actual track record for winning cases?
If a law firm tells you they win all of their cases, you should be very wary. Any law firm that has significant experience in mesothelioma cases has lost cases at trial. What you really want to look for are the successes the firm has experienced in cases like yours. Ask questions related to the exposures to asbestos you or your loved one encountered during their work history. At Baron & Budd, we have seen them all over the course of our 35+ year history of handling mesothelioma lawsuits.